The coronavirus disease is an infectious disease caused by SARS CoV-2 virus. One of the best ways to prevent the transmission of coronavirus is social distancing and constant self-cleanliness. The onset of coronavirus began in December 2019 and rapidly took over all the nations for the next two years. It has caused millions of deaths around the world, economic drops in countries and has various side effects. A blow on mental health is one of its side effects.
How has mental health been affected?
The uncertainty of the pandemic has instigated fear, stress, anxiety, panic, loneliness, distress and chaos in our lives. It has been noted that the intake of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana and other substances increased in the two years of the pandemic. Those who have given up on their addiction went back to higher levels of consumption to deal with the stress caused by the pandemic. .
Isolation and Discrimination
Social distancing has been a cause of isolation for many. Along with isolation, those affected by coronavirus were evidently discriminated against initially. They were not spoken to, post recovery they were avoided and by others. All these factors led to depression in them. Incase of a history of depression, their depression level increased.
It is a well established fact that coronavirus commenced in China, due to which the Chinese were hated on, abused and stigmatized as the villians in the whole situation. Not only them but all those of Asian descent faced this trauma. There were numerous cases of violence against them which has caused post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in them. The apprehension of such behaviour led to an increase in anxiety levels and panic attacks. All those resembling the Chinese had to fear this discrimination along with the pandemic.
As a measure to ensure social distancing, countries took to lockdown. The lockdown forced people to stay within their houses, all the businesses were shut, and no one could visit others. The whole process was difficult for many because man is a social being. The sudden shift from going to work or school everyday to staying home with your family caused mental distress. Conflict rates amongst the families have been noted to have risen. The people who were used to having a schedule and going off to work suddenly had no schedule and had to accustom themselves to new methods of working. Children had to attend online classes while they lost their sense of discipline and interest in their education.The owners of small businesses, daily wage labourers, vegetable grocers were affected financially.
All these situations caused a drastic change in lifestyle, habits, adjustment levels and priorities which was a tough change for everyone. It caused higher irritability, conflicts, higher anxiety, feeling of worthlessness and loss of hope.
Did you face it?
Apart from the general fear, those who were affected by the virus faced a higher level of uncertainty. They were more fearful and anxious for their lives. Their families were panicking and it was tough to manage such a situation. Hospitals did not have beds as a result of which many did not receive required treatment and lost their lives. All of which has caused trauma leading to guilt, depression and anger.
In the midst of all this chaos, there was barely any guidance to keep mental health under check. Therapy sessions were unavailable and people did not know how to deal with the stress of it all. The situation still persists. Here are some tips to help deal with it.
- Maintain all COVID protocols
- Avoid overthinking
- Write down your thoughts if they get too overwhelming
- Share your feelings with someone you trust
- Stay in touch with family and friends
- Keep yourself busy
- Get back to your hobbies in your free time
- Be kind to yourself and those around you
- Exercise or practice relaxation within your home
- Maintain a fixed sleep schedule
- Eat healthy everyday
- Limit the intake of news about the virus
- Believe news only from trusted sources
- Take one day at a time. Set goals for each day
Let’s ensure the safety of our physical and mental health during these tough times.